What we do

Development of AI powered medical device for early and accurate influenza detection

Why we do

In 2018, a record-breaking number of more than 20 million people were diagnosed with influenza in Japan. Influenza results in 10 million to 49 million diagnoses every year.

It takes as much as 24 hours after the disease onset for the accuracy of current rapid influenza diagnostic tests (RIDTs) to reach its maximum, which is said to be around only 60%(*1). Gradual efforts are being made towards improvement, but little breakthrough has been brought to the problem of low accuracy.

A false negative examination results in patients' commutes which is estimated to be one of the main reasons of spread of infection over the country. The accuracy is crucial matter not only in Japan but all over the world.

*1) Bruning AHL, et, al. Rapid Tests for Influenza, Respiratory Syncytial Virus, and Other Respiratory Viruses: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Clin Infect Dis. 2017 Sep 15;65(6):1026-1032.

New method for influenza diagnosis

We focus on a novel method of influenza diagnosis.

The method, found and first reported from Japan, focuses in the detection of influenza follicles.

An influenza follicle is a tumor-like structure, or a follicle, which appears in the posterior pharyngeal wall of influenza patients. Follicles are also observable in patients with common cold or even in healthy people. However, an "influenza follicle" is specific to its patients and is distinguishable by features such as its surface color, gloss, size and shapes.

Only expert doctors, doctors who had gone through a long-year professional training, can tell the difference between the follicles.

Our aim is to recreate those experienced doctors’ eyes in the form of medical device.

How our AI works

We are developing a machine-learning based AI which uses pharyngeal images instead of specimen collected by swab to make easy, accurate and early influenza detection possible.

Pattern recognition is an area AI has shown its superiority, while for human it takes years to recognize influenza follicle in high sensitivity and specificity.

Influenza follicles appear right after or even before the onset of influenza, so we believe it is no longer necessary to wait for 24 hours before receiving an exam.


Our Members

Sho Okiyama, M.D.

Founder and CEO

Sho Okiyama founded Aillis in 2017.
Prior to the foundation of Aillis, he was the executive officer of a Japanese healthcare startup Medley, inc. Before joining Medley, he worked as an air ambulance doctor and a DMAT (Disaster Medical Assistance Team) member. Earlier in his career, he served as an emergency physician at Japanese Red Cross Medical Center.
He is also the founder of Medical Imaging Working Group in AIST (The National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology).
He earned his medical degree from the University of Tokyo in 2010.

Hiroaki Kato, M.D.

Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer

Hiroaki Kato is the Co-founder and CSO of Aillis. He has been our Senior Vice President since April 2019.
Prior to the foundation of Aillis, he started his career as an ophthalmologist at Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine where he worked for 10 years, and then served as a Deputy Director of Health Policy Bureau in MHLW (Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare), where he engaged in legal writing and policy making.
He is also a visiting professor at Digital Hollywood University Graduate School, a visiting assistant professor at Chiba University, a clinical associate professor at Tokyo Medical and Dental University and a part-time lecturer at Tohoku University and Yokohama City University. He is an advisor for Medical Innovation Support Office of MHLW and Healthcare Innovation Hub of METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) and Nomination Committee at J-Startup. He earned his medical degree from Hamamatsu University School of Medicine.

Atsushi Fukuda

Chief Technology Officer

Atsushi Fukuda has joined Aillis in June 2018 and is the CTO of the company.
Prior to joining Aillis, he served as CTO at Caster, a Japanese HR startup, where he built and scaled an engineering team from 1 to nearly 10. Before joining Caster, he was an engineering manager at SMS Co., Ltd., a website operator regarding elderly care, where he led an engineering team of over 100 members. He also started a new business there.
Earlier in his career, he worked for IBM Research - Tokyo and was involved in a research of model-driven development. He became a technology consultant of embedded systems such as in-vehicles systems.
He earned his master's degree in econometrics from Tohoku University in 2003.

Daichi Tanaka

Chief Operating Officer, Executive Officer

Daichi Tanaka has joined Aillis in April 2018 and is the COO of the company.
Prior to joining Aillis, he served in various roles at SMS Co., Ltd., including most recently as Head of Web Department of 'MIMS.com', which is a Singapore-based medical information company SMS has acquired. Before that he led the project of launching a new website about dementia and made it to the most popular website in Japan in the category.
He began his career as a member of sales at Recruit Co.,Ltd.. He also engaged in business development at the Internet Business Promotion Office.

Masaki Nomura

Chief Creative Officer, Executive Officer

Masaki joined Aillis as Executive Officer in November 2018, and was appointed to CCO (Chief Creative Officer) in July 2019 to lead the company's out-of-the-box thinking with quite an extensive diversity of professional experience.
Masaki started his career as a government official at METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry, Government of Japan). He engaged in drafting several cabinet decisions including "Abenomics growth strategy", enforcing and amending regulations, at Healthcare Industries Division, etc. He has built bridges between public sectors and Aillis thorough representing his generation at a working group led by METI, advising Osaka Prefectural Government on OSAKA, Kansai EXPO 2025, and so on.
He earned BA in Letters from the University of Tokyo, while he passed the national government official exams as an economic major, and now studies philosophy as a PhD candidate Kyoto University.
He was selected for World Economic Forum's Global Shaper, St. Gallen Symposium's 100 Leaders of Tomorrow, One Young World's Japanese delegate among other things. HCAP Tokyo, the exclusive community he has built and served as president, received the University of Tokyo President's Award. He holds Kendo 4th Dan with 23 years experience.

Yujiro Maeda, D.D.S., Ph.D.


Yujiro Maeda joined Aillis in May 2018 as a director. Prior to joining Aillis, he worked for a VC. He also has experience in international business at a pharmaceutical company.
He has been trained at Stanford Biodesign, which provides one of the most structured ways to develop innovative medical devices. He was also involved in establishing Japan Biodesign as a director.
Earlier in his career, he served as an emergency oral surgeon for 7 years.
He is a consultant at Development of Medical Devices through Collaboration between Medicine and Industry in AMED (Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development).

Akiko Yamazaki

Corporate Department

Akiko Yamazaki joined Aillis in April 2018. She holds various rolls in the Corporate Department including accounting, general affairs and labor management.
Prior to joining Aillis, she worked for a healthcare company providing medical information to consumers, where she visited hospitals and clinics nationwide to interview. Before that, she worked for an IT startup and served in various roles such as general affairs and HR. She started her career at the Bank of Japan in 2008.

Takashi Yasumi

Lead Hardware Engineer

Takashi Yasumi joined Aillis in July 2018 and is responsible for product design and development of Aillis.
Prior to joining Aillis, he worked at Olympus Corporation as a mechanical engineer from 2015 to 2018. In that role he was involved in research and development of next-generation endoscopes.
He earned his master's degree in engineering from the University of Tokyo in March 2015.

Hiroshi Yoshihara

AI Engineer

Hiroshi Yoshihara joined Aillis in January 2019 as an AI engineer.
Hiroshi earned his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Tokyo, where he carried out researches in health technology assessment and health insurance claims data analysis. Currently he is a doctoral student at Kyoto University as well as a researcher at the University of Tokyo.
Hiroshi engaged in development of robot control system in a college robot contest team. He also participated in many domestic and international data science competitions and made good achievements. He has the title of Kaggle Master.
Outside of work, Hiroshi knows four languages and gives lectures about AI and healthcare inside and outside Japan.

Yoshihiro Todoroki

AI Engineer

Yoshihiro Todoroki joined Aillis in April 2019 as an AI engineer.
Prior to joining Aillis, he has been researching medical AI through university to graduate school. He also engaged in medical AI research at the National Institute of Information Sciences, Singapore.
He also gives lectures on medical AI towards medical students, doctors and businesspeople. He likes medical industry, the latest technology and ice cream.
He earned his master's degree from Ritsumeikan University Graduate School of Information Science and Engineering in 2019.

Akiho Sakuma

Hardware Engineer

Akiho Sakuma joined Aillis in October 2018 as a hardware engineer.
Prior to joining Aillis, she worked as a product designer of LIXIL Corporation, which is a Japanese manufacturer of building materials and housing equipment. Earlier in her career, she engaged in mechanical design at a measuring instrument manufacturer.
She graduated from the Faculty of Science of Saitama University in 2014.

Miho Nakamura, RN

Clinical Development Manager

Miho Nakamura joined Aillis in October 2018. She holds various operational positions including pharmaceutical affairs, clinical affairs, public relations and recruitment.
Prior to joining Aillis, she worked as a recruitment consultant of M3 Career Inc., which is a Japanese healthcare company. She has visited more than 200 hospitals nationwide. She also was involved in launching a new business about DPC consulting.
She worked as a nurse at ICU in Seirei Hamamatsu General Hospital earlier in her career.

Memori Fukuda, M.D.

Clinical Development Administrator

Memori Fukuda joined Aillis in February 2019 as a medical manager. She engages in research and product development from the medical point of view.
Prior to joining Aillis, she worked at the National Hospital Organization Tokyo Medical Center and Keio University Hospital, Department of Cardiology.
She earned her medical degree from Tokyo Women's Medical University. She is a board-certified member of the Japanese Circulation Society, and is also certified as a Japan Medical Association industrial physician.
She is the Public Relations Ambassador of the Japanese Circulation Society, a medical writer (Yahoo!, bouncy, etc.) and a resilience training lecturer.

Kazuto Honda

Medical Administrator

Kazuto Honda joined Aillis in February 2019.
Over the years, he has been involved in regulatory applications in several medical device manufacturers before joining Aillis. He has also managed the department of regulatory affairs at a major manufacturer.
Alongside, he worked as a member of the industry organization and was involved in various activities such as law revision, establishment of JIS, and formulation of AED advertising guidelines. Since 2016, he has been working as a regulatory consultant, supporting a number of medical device manufacturers.

Mizuki Watanabe

Clinical Development Administrator

Mizuki Watanabe joined Aillis in March 2019. She is supporting the operation of Medical Administration Division and Development Department widely.
Before joining Aillis, she worked at Management Support Division of M3 Career Inc., a Japanese healthcare company, and was involved in hospital management from the perspective of human resources.
She worked as a care worker at two nursing homes earlier in her career.

Ken Takahashi

Hardware Engineer

Ken Takahashi joined Aillis in October 2019 as a hardware engineer.
Before joining Aillis, he worked as a mechanical engineer of Yamaha Corporation, where he designed electronic piano keyboard systems. At the same time, he participated in new business proposals.
He engaged in research on nanoimprinting (a microfabrication technology) in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, the University of Tokyo. He earned his master’s degree in March 2015.
His Master's thesis presentation won Dean's Award and the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers Miura Award.

Masashi Sode

AI Engineer

Masashi Sode joined Aillis in October 2019 as a software engineer. He has been engaged extensively in software and medical AI development.
Before joining Aillis, he has been researching the composite aircraft design using simulation and multi-objective bayesian optimization.
He earned his master’s degree in aerospace engineering from Tohoku University in 2019.
His current research interests focus on augmenting human capabililties through innovative technology. His next goal is to earn Ph.D in biomedical engineering.

Nozomi Tanaka

COO Office

Nozomi Tanaka joined Aillis in October 2018 and is responsible for business development.
Prior to joining Aillis, he was an executive officer at a medical social network service operating startup.
He led a collaboration project with a pharmaceutical company there.
Earlier in his career, he worked at Boston Consulting Group where he engaged in various projects mainly in the consumer healthcare fields.
He earned his master's degree in economics from Hitotsubashi University.

Chika Horike

Corporate Department / COO Office

Chika Horike joined Aillis in January 2020. She is in charge of PR and communications.
Before joining Aillis, she served in various roles at Medley, a Japanese healthcare startup, from 2015 to 2018, including media planner, editor-in-chief, product manager, etc.
Prior to Medley, she worked as an intrepreneur of a Japanese internet media company GREE, Inc. She was involved in launching a new business about online senior care referral service.
She began her career as an editor at a major publishing company. She has also spent time as a customer service at an educational startup company.

Saho Kameyama

COO Office Project Manager

Saho Kameyama joined Aillis in December 2019. Prior to joining Aillis, she worked for two IT startups, Advertising and Fintech, and served in various rolls, including business planner, customer service, marketing, growth hacking etc.
She earned her Ph.D. degree from Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University. Her fields of research interests are bioacoustics of animals.

Kohei Akane

Head of Open Innovation Department

Kohei Akane joined Aillis in February 2020 and is responsible for business development.
Prior to joining Aillis, he held various positions at Schoo, Inc., a Japanese edtech startup, including web developer,scrum master, corporate sales representative, new business developer, customer business development manager and CEO of a subsidiary.
Earlier in his career, he worked as a web developer of GREE, Inc., which is a Japanese internet media company.
He earned his bachelor's degree in engineering from Waseda University.

Takumi Shiokawa

Global Business Development Manager

Takumi Shiokawa joined Aillis in April 2020 as a global business development manager. He was the regional manager of the Middle East and Africa at the Dubai office of Terra Drone Corporation, the world's top industrial drone provider. He was promoted to that position in 2019 after helping its business develop as corporate sales both in Japan and abroad, visiting more than 25 countries and setting up its foreign branches. He was also instrumental in founding Terra Drone in 2016, while an undergraduate physics student at Tokyo Institute of Technology.

Kazutaka Okuda, M.D.

Corporate Department

Kazutaka Okuda joined Aillis in July 2020.
He has also been the CEO of Universal Mind since 2018 and leading multiple projects in the field of neuroscience, such as R&D and industry-academia collaboration. He got his medical degree from Kyushu University where he mainly researched brain function analysis and neuromodulation.

Yuji Ariyasu

AI Engineer

Yuji Ariyasu joined Aillis in August 2020 as an AI engineer.
While working as a web engineer before joining Aillis, he became interested in machine learning and began studying it in July 2019. In May 2020 he won second place in the Kaggle ARC competition.

Seed-stage Technology-based Startup Support Program 2018